I laughed tonight and heard a familiar voice.
I have 2 amazing sisters, Amanda and Kim. Kim is a few years senior, and Amanda is a year and four months older than me.
Almost Irish twins. But not quite.
I was astonished growing up when people thought we looked alike. I was as awkward as possible, and My Amanda has the most beautiful face. And had natural navigation. She just knew how to be, how to react, how to do. I didn’t come by that naturally. I think I almost took it as a compliment, despite my disagreement, that I looked like My Amanda. But we did look alike, I guess. Teachers would often call us by each others name, which we just learned to ignore. Even our own family would mistake us. I learned to answer to “Mandy Dana” and the few pictures from our childhood could be either or one, or both. After our toddler years, our parents kept my hair long and hers short. Maybe to tell us apart. I don’t know. But we both used the same Christening photo taken in my parents bedroom for our Grade 1 projects about time-lining our childhood. Only because nobody really knows if that little baby was me or My Amanda. The bedspread gave no clues. It was white and soft and maybe somewhat pricey… lasted Roxy and Tom through both pregnancies.
The one undeniable likeness, to me, was our voice. Our speech. Our way. My Amanda got me to break up with one of her junior high school beaus, of which she had many in line and was oblivious. Over the telephone. And I did it. She wasn’t malicious… she just couldn’t do it. She really liked him. Liked him. He didn’t have a clue. He thought I was her. After dating for three weeks, a lifetime- nay, a marriage in high school minutes- the young fella didn’t know. It was a terrible thing to do, she knows that and knew that, and I did too. But it was also an amazing moment in sisterness. And I’d never take it back.
My Amanda went to university and moved an hour away. I would visit her every weekend. The next year, I went to school on the other side of the province, and we had two months apart. We’d never been distant for so long. My first night back, we met up at our parents house and gushed and gabbed and got ready to meet our friends. We brushed our teeth together and both bended down to rinse and when we stood up, I was shocked. I saw the two of us in the mirror and didn’t know which one I was. I was disoriented. I was thrown. I was, for a second, My Amanda.
I sat on a patio tonight with My Jenny. A friend who has become my sister. And she told me about her world and her day and I laughed. I laughed out loud and I heard My Amanda. Laughing.
She has told me so much recently that she wishes she was with me. But she always has been and always is.
I love my sisters.